Fun and Interesting Betta Fish Facts
Betta's are known for their beauty, but they are more unique than just
their body shape and magnificent coloring. Betta's have a storied history, and the Betta that most of us are
familiar is a recent product of genetics - in many ways, different from their native counterparts.
Betta fish, also called Siamese Fighting Fish, are "officially known" as Crowntail Betta's. For more fun and
interesting Betta fish facts, look no further.
Betta fish originate in Thailand and other Southeast Asian countries. They are a unique fish in that their home
is generally made in the small pools of water in rice paddies. They live in water that provides them with an
abundance of food, and that is shallow, which accommodates their unique bodily structure.
The Betta fish that most of us are familiar with is a product of selective breeding. An Indonesian breeder
"officially" created the Betta fish that we are familiar with in 1997. The native Betta's were bred for certain
characteristics - not unlike how purebred dogs and cats are selected - such as more vibrant or varied coloring, and
longer and more filmy fins and tails. In their natural habitat, there is not the variety, nor vibrancy of color in
Betta's as there are in the one's that most who keep them as pets are familiar with.
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Due to the fact that they live in pools of shallow water, they have the ability to jump. This is likely a
behavior that was developed in order to get from pool to pool of water, but this characteristic is still present in
the Betta's we are familiar with. A useful Betta fish fact is their tendency to jump. This is the reasoning behind
having lids on Betta fish bowls, as it will keep them from trying to find another pool that does not exist.
They like tropical conditions, doing best between 80-85 degrees. Male Betta fish are carnivorous, and due to
their natural habitat, have ready access to mosquito larvae and many other live foods. Male Betta fish are also
notorious fighters and are incredibly aggressive and territorial. They will fight to the death with other male
Betta's over females and territories. They are so aggressive that they will puff out and start ramming the sides of
their bowl if you put a mirror in front of them.
Perhaps the most interesting Betta fish fact is their unique breathing system. They have what are referred to as
"labyrinth" organs. When they are in the fry, or "baby", stage they breath through primitive gills. However, as
they become adults, these gills no longer work for breathing. Therefore, they have special organs that allow them
to breath fresh air. They must come to the top of the water and breathe in air, just as we have to. This type of
breathing structure is incredibly rare in the fish kingdom.
So not only are Betta's beautiful, but there are a lot of interesting Betta fish facts that make this fish all
the more interesting. From it's history, what we know of as the Betta fish, and their unique bodily structures,
they are interesting to both the senses and the mind.
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